New Mexico BDR Ride Report- First BDR

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by J_Wood, Oct 1, 2017.

  1. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
    October 1, 2017

    It’s only Sunday and the excitement of my upcoming trip is tangible- some 750 miles from Owasso OK to Dell City Texas for my first ever Back Country discovery route through the “Land of Enchantment”, New Mexico. I’ve made it my duty and goal to track and document anything that comes about as I do these trips moving forward in the attempt to pass this on to my (future) children and hopefully instill in them the sense of adventure that seems disappointingly missing in society today, and would be humbled if others found inspiration in my exploits through travel. I continue to be flattered with blank stares of astonishment when I tell my peers about my ambitious travel plans- ride to the starting point, traverse the 1,200 miles of (mostly) unpaved roads to eventually finish in Antonito, Colorado. Additionally, we will ride further north to meet up with some friends of my fathers for a bit of fly fishing before turning our wheels towards home. My Father Steve and Uncle Loren will be my travel companions for the BDR, and my dad and I will split up from Loren as we “cross the Finish Line” in Colorado.

    It would be unkind to mention my Uncle without listing his previous accomplishments- riding from Nixa Missouri to the Black Hills of South Dakota, and venturing to Utah on his VStrom 1000 for an appearance at his High School Reunion. Along with his stories of riding through Deadwood and Mount Rushmore, Ewan MacGregor and Charley Boorman’s Long Way trips, and an unhealthy obsession with eventually living life on two wheels, I took it upon myself to drink the Kool Aid and purchased a candy red 2005 VStrom 650 to get into this “adv craze” back in August of 2016. To my astonishment my staunchly “no motorcycles!” parents did a complete 180 and now regularly ride on their Africa Twins with me. This comes as a shock to me still as my father purchased my Uncle’s VStrom 1000 and rode for the first time in 23 years – hint, that was about how long it has been since I came into the picture- from Houston to Tulsa…

    Back to the Present, we all have different bikes but the same crazy longing for travel sans four wheels. With a trip to the Talimena State Byway and Big Bend National Park under my Father, Uncle, and I’s belts we’ve set sights on the next big off-road adventure. For this trip meticulous planning has been underway since a slightly alcohol-fueled pow-wow around the mesquite tinged smoke of a fire in a wigwam at Planet Marfa in… Marfa, Texas. Amazed at the capability, ruggedness, and pedigree of my (at the time) Uncle’s bike during the Big Bend trip – a BMW F800GS- I set my sights on a proper Dual Sport Bike. Going back and forth between the BMW Roundel, Honda’s venerable revival of the Africa Twin, KTM and their 990 Adventure, and Husqvarna’s scrappy TR650 Terra, you can see that I had my work cut out for me! Hours of research and firsthand experience on a R1200GS, my father’s Africa Twin, and a brief jaunt through my Uncle’s neighborhood with his F800GS certainly narrowed my search to two brands and three bikes- now I was getting somewhere. Then arose the opportunity of a lifetime- my Uncle decided to purchase a new bike for his stable, and asked if I would be interested in buying his Beemer. HELL YES I WAS! Knowing his meticulous care for the bike and work put into it I would be a dummy and a fool of a nephew to pass on that. Now, with four days to go and an amazing bike to travel with, adventure couldn’t be here any sooner.

    Now for a brief rundown of what my fellow riders will be “living on” for the next week- my dad will be on his Africa twin, and most likely making a point as to how incredible it is, with its Dual Clutch Automatic transmission… so I am mentally preparing myself for that upcoming dialogue. I’m also keen to see how will go about his packing situation as he chooses between his Bumot aluminum panniers (which make his bike look akin to an ice cream truck by the way) or Bumot soft bags for durability with the rugged unpleasantness that we may deal with in Southern New Mexico. I find myself astonished with the bike’s less is more simplicity, and fully acknowledge its prowess on pavement and off. My Uncle has come to a decision between the sensuous Ducati Multistrada Enduro and the take no quarter KTM 1290 Super Adventure R, with the shockingly attractive pumpkin orange Austrian (no, not Mr Olympia himself) emerging victorious. A technological marvel replete with rider aids and creature comforts, we are all excited to see this fighter jet of a bike tear through the landscapes of New Mexico. I only stop my writing to resume reality and start the dreaded chore of packing now..
    #1
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  2. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
    [​IMG]

    Quick pic of my Bike- 2010 F800GS. Will look a little different with all my creature comforts loaded on it but love it!


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    #2
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  3. HighDrag

    HighDrag n00b

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2016
    Oddometer:
    7
    Location:
    Central Texas
    Enjoy! I did the NMBDR two summers ago, but I was on a TW200 which was about perfect for the off Highway sections...but sloooow riding up those mountains roads. Bigger bikes are definitely going to be more of an adventure!


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    #3
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  4. Rips Millar

    Rips Millar capt. mediocre

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Reno, NV
    :dukegirl
    #4
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  5. PlznMySoul

    PlznMySoul Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Oddometer:
    268
    Location:
    Dirty South... FloRyda
    Sounds exciting.

    :lurk I'm in....
    #5
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  6. Crash_Man

    Crash_Man Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Oddometer:
    72
    Location:
    Temecula
    :dirtdog I'm In....
    #6
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  7. TRGunner

    TRGunner Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2017
    Oddometer:
    29
    Im in.
    #7
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  8. Graybush

    Graybush I like turtles.

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2013
    Oddometer:
    473
    Location:
    Shi Tpa Town, Pensacola, FL
    I'll be watching since I'm planning to do this ride next September.
    #8
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  9. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
    [​IMG]

    In less than 8 hours I roll out with my Dad for the first of many lifetime trips. The Beemer is loaded to the gills and will be my faithful companion for the miles ahead of us.

    After a lighthearted conversation with my Grandmother I quipped about how simple it is to load a car up with luggage... but where’s the fun in that?

    The other entertaining part of it all is deciding what precious creature comforts to take along with me- my folding campchair, Vapur flask of port wine, Savinelli pipe with tobacco, Randolph Engineering sunglasses, and a recent purchase- a Luci solar powered camp light.

    With much prayer and hopefully plenty of sleep I look forward to what good fortune and many memories lie ahead!


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    #9
  10. PlznMySoul

    PlznMySoul Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Oddometer:
    268
    Location:
    Dirty South... FloRyda
    Pffft... Good luck sleeping with less than 8 hours to go. The excitement and adrenaline is about to kick up a notch or two! :happay
    #10
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  11. TRGunner

    TRGunner Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2017
    Oddometer:
    29
    How was the first day?
    #11
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  12. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
    What a Crazy Day! It wouldn’t be an adventure without some entertainment, and we had a fair share of outstanding moments.

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    This morning I rode over to my parent’s house to link up with my Dad and get a proper sendoff from the Mom Unit and Grandparents. The dreariness of yesterday’s rain lingered on through the night, and we started our ride on a light rinse cycle towards the first of many turnpike toll booths. Some highway robbery later we discovered that although the rain had let off, the wind was taking a toll on the Africa Twin’s fuel mileage, and a fuel stop in Oklahoma City resulted in a fluke breaking of my Dad’s bike-focals (spoiler alert, we later picked up a new set in Wichita Falls, TX)

    With lunch setting heavy on our stomachs we mustered on and upon his suggestion agreed to try a Mediterranean restaurant in Lawton. My dad waxed poetic about how damn good the food was and thus set a high bar for me. After sitting down at LAR’S Greek House and ordering a Gyro Sandwich and freshly made Baklava I can confirm this- the food exceeded my expectations and pleasantly enjoyed visiting with the owner about her family’s story, if you’re in Lawton pay Ranetta a stop and enjoy great food.


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  13. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
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    Quick pic of today’s lunch at LAR’S.

    With the bikes and riders fueled up we made our way into Texas via Wichita Falls and made the fantastically great decision of riding until a necessary pit stop in Monday Texas. Still being new-ish to biking as of August ‘16 I find the interactions with strangers to be an incredibly enriching and sometimes amusing experience, and what we were about to go through would be that entertaining experience. A gentleman in a black t shirt, wranglers and flip flops climbed out of his truck and instantly began spinning a yarn with my Dad about how bada** it was that we were riding our pigs off-road and that he will need to add an Africa Twin to his life after a thorough inspection of farkles. [​IMG]
    Just before meeting our new acquaintance in Monday, Texas

    A totally off the cuff comment about us being near Bear Country led the individual to ask if we were “packing Heat” to which I replied yes (I don’t like the idea of bears) and what happened next still has me scratching my head- he reached into his truck and began handing us his handgun collection and asked us to opine on his assortment of Swiss-Made handguns. After more small talk and returning his personal affects we parted ways after he informed us that should we run into trouble with the law that we were friends with him, The Undertaker (A Mr Kevin Smith) of Monday.

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    Amusement aside, I have to mention that I am still nonplussed at my Dad’s tenacity- after returning from a one day round trip to Dallas for work on Tuesday he went in to the dentist complaining of pain in his jaw which led to the discovery and remediation of an abscessed tooth. The fact that he is riding for the next week and a half astonishes and impresses me immensely!

    [​IMG]

    We arrived in Snyder Texas this evening and after deciding on some Bear Grylls-style camping (the hotel kind) am calling it a night. 450 miles and almost 10 hours later, it’s not so bad to type this update out on a full size mattress with a beer within reach. Tomorrow we plan on meeting up with fellow inmate/my Uncle LSkinner to get within reach of Dell City and the starting line of the NM BDR...


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  14. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
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    The ride from Snyder to Dell City was definitely an interesting one. Starting out with some nice overcast weather we rolled out after a late hotel checkout (10am) through the town square and made good progress towards Lamesa. Being spoiled to the Texas speed limits I took the lead and had a close encounter- some vultures were taking their part in the circle of life as they devoured on a recently deceased coyote, and upon my passing them took heed with my horn to warn them of my passing... needless to say one of the carrion birds came a little too close for comfort and according to Dad almost clipped my helmet with its talons!

    We stopped for fuel in Lamesa and were approached by two riders on their way from Odessa to Snyder- a Donnie Butler and his wife were impressed with our setup and told us to take heed of the strong winds on HWY 62 as we rode to Carlsbad, NM to meet up with LSkinner. Bucking the winds and persevering through the long drive paid off with scrumptious eats through the local favorite Mexican joint Lucy’s, and we rode towards Guadalupe Mountain National Park to Camp.

    As we approached the camp supervisor we were promptly informed that the site was full... Lame! We quickly decided to ride towards El Capitan for a Photo op, and muster on to Dell City for an easy start on the NMBDR. A few beers and cigars later we call it an evening and look forward to proper riding in the am!

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    Meeting up with LSkinner in Carlsbad

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    The bikes lined up to leave town

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    Quick photo with El Capitan in the background






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  15. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
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    Dad Lining up the perfect shot...

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    Getting ready to leave the rest stop

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    Camp site in Dell City

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    Using my Luci lantern for a “campfire”


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  16. chudzikb

    chudzikb Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2016
    Oddometer:
    648
    Great trip, enjoy your time away from people.
    #16
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  17. BSTT

    BSTT Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    116
    Location:
    Braunschweig, Germany
    Interesting set of bikes. Good pics:0-0. Nice ypu are heading for.

    So i'm in.

    Ciao Gero
    #17
  18. Stewardh2o

    Stewardh2o n00b

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Oddometer:
    2
    Just want to throw in on how proud of @J_Wood I am, he is riding like an boss.
    #18
  19. chudzikb

    chudzikb Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2016
    Oddometer:
    648
    Oh, and just out of curiosity from a fellow F800 owner, did you upgrade your stator and flywheel to the current year 13 on design? I swear I am not trying to jinx you!
    #19
  20. J_Wood

    J_Wood Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Oddometer:
    34
    Location:
    Tulsa OK
    Been mostly out of cell service and camping, will update as I get closer to civilization


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    #20